What to watch for today
Typhoon Nangka hits mainland Japan. The powerful storm has already landed in parts of the country, with heavy rainfall and winds as strong as 75 mph (120 km/h). Travel has ground to a halt, and electricity outages, flooding, and landslides are likely.
What’s up with the US economy? Encouraging signs are expected when the Labor Department releases data on consumer prices and the Commerce Department reports on housing. But an expected boost to retail sales failed to materialize earlier this week—so there’s a chance of surprise.
The earnings season is in full swing. General Electric, Ericsson, Honeywell, and Synchrony Financial are among those reporting their results.
Ramadan ends. Eid al-Fitr, the feast that celebrates the end of the holy month, begins in many Muslim countries.
While you were sleeping
Google’s earnings clicked with investors. Shares rose more than 9% after second-quarter profits easily beat expectations due to stronger advertising revenue. New CFO Ruth Porat alluded to Google’s slower pace of hiring, saying the company is developing new opportunities “with great care regarding resource allocation.”
A gunman killed four marines in the US. Mohammad Youssuf Abdulazeez, a Kuwaiti-born US citizen, also wounded several others in an attack in Tennessee, before he was killed in a gun fight. Abdulazeez was not previously known to law enforcement, and the FBI has not speculated on the motives behind the attack.
Europe speculated on the IMF’s commitment to a Greek bailout. The US-based International Monetary Fund will not be a part of the first tranche of Greece’s third bailout, according to a letter from German finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble. The institution was expected to be involved, and could still take part in later tranches.
Australia held a memorial for flight MH17. A plaque with the names of 39 Australians on board the flight, which was shot down over Ukraine one year ago today, was unveiled in Canberra. Calls for an international tribunal over the shooting of the plane were rejected by Russian president Vladimir Putin, who complained about “politicized” coverage of the incident.
America Movil’s profit fell by a quarter. The Mexican telecommunications company reported a second-quarter net income of 14 billion pesos ($895 million), down 25.4% compared to a year earlier on currency headwinds. America Movil is under pressure from Mexican competition authorities, which are breaking up the company’s dominance of the market.
Quartz obsession interlude
Gwynn Guilford and Heather Timmons on a metal-trading scheme that bamboozled Chinese investors out of billions. “Why did hundreds of thousands of individual investors sink millions of yuan into a derivative product linked to indium, bismuth, and other metals few have ever heard of? The answer highlights how Chinese government regulations make it hard for middle-class households to safely grow their savings.” Read more here.
Matters of debate
Bailouts might not be the best option for struggling economies. Greece should take a cue from Asia.
There were other options in the Iran negotiations. Coercive diplomacy would have yielded a better deal (paywall).
Trolls are winning the internet war. But humans can still prevail—take it from former Reddit CEO Ellen Pao.
The mindfulness craze is another money-making scheme. Don’t expect it to change our mental well-being.
Atticus Fitch’s racism was necessary in Go Set a Watchman. The novel reveals more about the complicated history of the US South.
Prehistoric humans also had to suffer through dentist visits. There’s evidence in a 14,000-year-old tooth with cavities.
A plague of hanging dildos has hit Portland. The weirdest city in the US just got even weirder.
A Georgia artist wants to add Outkast to a Confederate version of Mount Rushmore. The rappers would be driving a Cadillac alongside Robert E. Lee.
A huge winged dinosaur was discovered in China. The incredibly preserved fossil shows impressive plumage.
Canadian researchers are working on a breathalyzer for weed. It would provide a test for stoned driving.